Saturday, August 27, 2016

Message of Interest - Henry Gruver Interview

Below is a couple of links (part 1 and 2) of a recent interview with Henry Gruver speaking.
In the interview Henry tells of an amazing miracle involving dragonflies in Taiwan.  He also relays his experience with gold dust which I found interesting and follows up with a telling of an amazing teleportation event that happened to him and 6 others back in 1988.  Definitely worth a listen and it should encourage you to get closer to God!    Part 1   Part 2

Week 34 Bible Reading Review

Week 34  Jeremiah 36:1 to Lamentations 1:1

Jer 36:4  Jeremiah dictates God’s past words from memory?  Impressive!

Jer 36:19  Some people believed Jeremiah, but the king did not, thus bringing down Israel.  This shows that the leader has great effect on the nation.

Jer 38:26  The king tells Jeremiah what to say when questioned, which was truthful, thus allowing Jeremiah to maintain integrity.

Jer 39  It seems king Nebuchadnezzar knew of Jeremiah and spared him.  This Showed God’s hand of protection, God spared Ebed-melech and Jeremiah for trusting in Him.

Jer 42:5  Although the people sought God through Jeremiah, they still rejected His counsel.  Why didn’t the people follow God’s instruction?  Perhaps fear ruled their life and they were not accustomed to obeying God, but doing what seems right in their own eyes.

It took 10 days for Jeremiah to get an answer from God.  Do we have the patience to wait on the Lord?  Jeremiah didn’t just get an answer for the people, he also knew their response.

Jer 53  Why did the people say Baruch was behind Jeremiah’s “lies”?  Stranger still, why would they take Baruch and Jeremiah with them to Egypt?  Perhaps this was God extending mercy to the remnant by not cutting them of from His prophet.

Jer 44:15+  It seems the people were short sighted, believing their past experience over God’s prophet.  They had a disconnect from cause and effect.  How many times do we also mistake God’s mercy and patience for his acceptance of our behavior?

Jer 45  Baruch was despondent for no stated reason.  Simply the state of the nation would be enough.  God grants him protection for his service.

Jer 45+  The remaining chapters are prophecies of doom and destruction on other nations.  All people will be judged.

It seems a primary reason why Babylon is destroyed is because they destroyed Jerusalem and God’s temple, which was God’s will as prophesied by Jeremiah.  Why then would this be reason to destroy Babylon?  There are plenty of other reasons to suffice.  Perhaps David knew of this principle and would not take out Saul, even though God had passed the kingdom to David.

Next Reading:  Week 35  Lamentations 1:1 to Ezekiel 20:1

Wisdom for the week

Here is my choice post from Dale Cresap from this past week.  May we all take the time to know Him!

My word tells you to be still and know that I am God. This implies that there is a connection between stillness and knowing. Is this how you know other things? A diligent search for knowledge implies proactive involvement. You have many resources available to you for all the facts in the world. Yet knowing me is different. This is a journey in which you make greater progress by slowing down and calming down. The world and its distractions and your own racing thoughts are too prominent in your awareness. If you want to know the author of life, release those things and I will come to you.

Friday, August 19, 2016

Week 33 Bible Reading Review

Week 33  Jeremiah 16:1 to Jeremiah 36:1

Jer 16:1-4  There are times and places where even God tells people not to get married and have children.  This is a perspective change in my understanding of God.

Jer 16:5  God removed his peace, love, and compassion. This is disastrous for the rebels.  In v15 His compassion will return, but many generations later.

Jer 17:4  “My anger will burn forever”.  This idea conflicts with other verses showing future compassion.  Other translations read similar, but for some reason the LXX (Septuagint) does not have verses 1-4 of chapter 17.

Jer 17:7-8  The man who trusts in the Lord is contrasted with the one who does not.  Verse 8 gives an excellent word picture of a tree and lesson in how to trust in God.  Trusting in God is being void of fear regardless of the day’s trials or “heat”, and no worry is found despite the long term tribulations or “drought” that may come.  It does not stop you from producing His fruit!  This example was more profound to me than the “just trust God” cliché.

Jer 17:10  Yahweh tests the mind and heart, to give us according to what our actions deserve.  Do we truly believe this?  If so our actions should reflect this.

Jer 18:8-10  A pronounced judgement from God can be adverted whether good or bad!

Jer 18:18+  Jeremiah did not ask for mercy for his enemies, but retribution.  Despite this, his words aligned with God’s judgements given.

Jer 20  Jeremiah, like Job, cursed his own birth, showing severe stress and strain that he endured in life.  I have it so easy…  There is no recorded response from God here.

Jer 21:8-9  Even though complete destruction of Israel was eminent, God provided a way of escape through surrender to the invaders, an act of mercy even still.

Jer 22:2  More ways of escape from pending doom were given.  Simply administer justice and righteousness to avoid calamity of the nation.

Jer 22:16  Many will say that our purpose in life is to know God, but few teach how to actually accomplish this.  This verse gives a starting point to those struggling to know Him, as well as a check point to those who think they do.  To know God is to administer justice and righteousness.  As we strive to walk daily in justice and righteousness (weightier matters of the law) we will need to depend on Him.  Study His word and ask Him to show us how to administer this in each situation we face, which in turn will develop our relationship and deepen our knowing of Him.

Jer 23  In this chapter God chastises the false prophets who speak their own words and lead His people astray.  With that definition, teachers of today might be as guilty, speaking their own words, and leading people astray from the Creator with the story of evolution for example.  How many others do similar things today?  Saying God said something when He did not is perhaps worse yet.

Jer 25:9  God calls Nebuchadnezzar His servant, while pronouncing future judgement on Babylon.  Would “My tool” be a more apt title?

Jer 26  The people wanted to kill Jeremiah because they didn’t like God’s message he was speaking.  Despite all of this, Jeremiah offered God’s way of escape.  The debate that ensued resulted in Jeremiah’s release as well as his words being heard by many.  How do we respond to hard words of correction?

Jer 27  Jeremiah also prophesied to surrounding kings and nations.  Hananiah died for prophesying something not from God.  This should make anyone not sure of what they heard think twice before claiming it is “the word of the Lord”.

Jer 29  God continues to show mercy to the exiles (because they had obeyed, Jer 21:8-9) with a 70 year promised restoration.

Jer 30:24  The Lord’s burning anger will not turn back until He has completely fulfilled the purpose of His heart.  This gives the conclusion to my note from 17:4 above and reemphasizes a principle in Bible interpretation.  One must take the whole of scripture to get the complete picture, understanding, and instruction.  Sometimes parts are left out in places, but this does not negate the words given in other places.  For example, we cannot teach that whatever we ask for in His name we will receive, without the inclusion that it be according to His will.

Jer 30  Prophesies of restoration are given, but not for the immediate audience.  Could the people grasp this or did they think it would happen in their day?

Jer 31  God speaks of the nation of Israel as a single person or unit despite the passage of much time over many generations, it is still as one body to Him.  It is easy for us to separate ourselves from those around us and be disconnected or think that what we do doesn’t affect anyone else.  Perhaps we should learn from this example, that we are part of a whole and our goal should be unity in the body as well as perfection of ourselves.

Jer 31:33  A new covenant is declared:  God’s laws to be written on hearts.  Jer 32:40  God puts the fear of Himself in people’s hearts so they will not turn away.  This could be talking about the same thing.  We should be able to ask Him to write His laws on our hearts and fill us with the fear of Him as this is needed.

Jer 33  Repeatedly in this section God speaks of destruction followed by restoration.  The restoration was needed for the coming of Messiah, both His first and second coming.

Jer 35  The Rekabites were honored by God and made as an example for not drinking wine as their ancestor had instructed, (among other significant lifestyle changing things) while Israel was chastised for not obeying God.  Why is it often easier for us to obey man (our boss, etc.) rather than God?  Is it because cause and effect seem more real / imminent with men then God?  Or because obeying God can bring persecution from man which we want to avoid?

Jeremiah was a bold / brave man in my opinion.  He delivered God’s hard messages to men and kings.  He did not appear to doubt / second guess what he heard from God, even calling out other “prophets” as false who opposed him to his face.  Well done!  May we all be more like Jeremiah!

Next Reading:  Week 34  Jeremiah 36:1 to Lamentations 1:1

Friday, August 12, 2016

Week 32 Bible Reading Review

The house of Israel / Judah no longer had Yahweh's covering during Jeremiah's time.

Week 32  Isaiah 59:1 to Jeremiah 16:1

Jer 1  Jeremiah’s purpose and destiny was clear from a youth. Given to him by God himself, even though he didn’t want to do this calling, he was obedient.  The vision questions God asked sound like training for Jeremiah’s spiritual eyes.  Then he was told to speak His judgements, more training and testing.

Jer 2:3  The first fruits are YHVH’s.  Guilt and disaster comes to those who eat of it.  Is this the consequence to the former command?  Do we consider this command today?

Jer 2:6,8  In two verses the question “Where is the Lord?” is no longer asked. This happens when we give up and quit seeking Him and go our own way.  Have we stopped asking this question?

Jer 7:16 (11:14)  There is a point when prayer is not effective, when it is opposed to God’s will / command.

Jer 7:20 (13:14)  The wrath of God is not to be dismissed for a God of only love.

Jer 7:22-23  It seems burnt offerings and sacrifices were added / commanded because of iniquities.  Disobedience brings more rules.

Jer 9:3  The people went about their own ways and did not consider God in their actions.  This is a natural progression of no longer asking “Where is the Lord?”

Jer 10:25  Flesh circumcision / obedience is not sufficient.  We must also be circumcised / obedient in the heart!

Jer 11  The people wanted to kill Jeremiah so that they didn’t have to hear God, resulting in their demise.  Don’t shut out words just because we don’t like what they are saying, but examine them in humility.

Jeremiah delivered God’s words to the people, despite persecution for God's hard words.  He struggled with God through the trials.  God promised deliverance in obedience.  We can learn from this that obedience is not always the easy path, but it is the best road.

Next Reading:  Week 33  Jeremiah 16:1 to Jeremiah 36:1

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Week 31 Bible Reading Review

Week 31  Isaiah 31:1 to Isaiah 59:1

Isaiah reads like a collection of shorter writings, not in chronological order.

Isa 37:21  Reminds us again to always bring all things to God.

Isa 46  We may not have golden idols today, but what in our lives takes the place of God?  Our job, our accomplishments, our possessions, our selves or other people?

Isa 53  This chapter foretells the role of Yeshua / Jesus on earth. Yet much of it is given in a past tense, giving the impression that it is as good as done.  The narrator also changes, for example, as shown by He vs My.  (Isaiah vs God)  - giving a more authoritative position.

Next Reading: Week 32  Isaiah 59:1 to Jeremiah 16:1